The Herald Bulletin

Afternoon Update

Opinion

December 23, 2013

Viewpoint: Governors' actions defy democracy

One might seriously question the Indiana Republican Party’s commitment to democracy, based on the behavior of our immediate past and current governors. We learned from Mitch Daniels that, if you disagree with an author (say, for instance, Howard Zinn), you claim that his book, “A People’s History of the United States,” is “crap” and try to ban it. When your foolishness becomes public, you claim that you were trying only to keep “innocent” schoolchildren K-12 from being exposed to it.

I have yet to find anything in Zinn’s book that would misinform a student. At any rate, Zinn’s books are used in college-level classes, and Daniels was reassured that no high schools are using them. But the fact remains that he tried to ban its use in higher education, not K-12.

Then we move on to Mike Pence. First, if you’re Pence, and you don’t like the Affordable Health Care Act — and especially the president whose idea it was — you ignore it: refuse to set up a state marketplace for the Affordable Care Act or to expand access to Medicaid, effectively keeping tens of thousands of residents from qualifying. You tout the Healthy Indiana Plan instead, which serves fewer than 36,000 and has a waiting list of 55,000. That leaves a lot of people without insurance — somewhere between 800,000+ in a state of only 6 ½ million people. (Pence acknowledges that, under the best scenario, 300,000 will still be uninsured.) When challenged, you say the uninsured can go to doctors, to med centers, and even the emergency room! Of course, they can’t afford to go to doctors or med centers, since they have no insurance, and those of us who have insurance end up paying the ER bill. By the way, isn’t the care offered at emergency rooms supposed to be limited to emergencies? Finally, you claim that your plan will keep Indiana “at the forefront of consumer-driven health care.” What, exactly, is that supposed to mean?

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